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Jul 23, 2008 09:34 PM

Hankook Supermarket (Korean grocery store), Sunnyvale report

My first time at Hankook, a Korean grocery store. Lots of interesting stuff to look at. They have many little sections to buy other stuff like cosmetics, Shiseido, music, shoes, there's a deli, baker village, etc.

You can buy roasted seaweed where a lady is roasting in what looks like a big toaster. You can get low-salt or salt, a package is $4.50

Chap jae (glass noodles) pre-packaged $4.5
pig's blood stuffed w/ rice $5 - cut up
shrimp & egg omelet $5

A ready-to-eat like salad bar
Marinated raw meats to bring home to cook up. They have spicy pork which I love

You can buy soju - didn't notice the prices. Many kinds available.

Cucumber kimchi was $3.99/lb
seasoned pork $4.99/lb
seasoned seaweed $7.99/lb
seasoned fishcake $5.99/lb

cold noodle in the freezer section $1.99/pk

Maeda-en Green Tea ice cream -1/2 gallon for $7.29
1 qtr of it regular price $4.99 on sale $2.99 when I went

Red bean ice cream sandwiches .99c a bar

Frozen natto packaged in the frozen section $1.99 a container

Stuff I bought:
Tube Zero (a tube flattener) $3.29
Mantion kimchi $5.99 a glass jar
Sambuja seeweed 9 pk for $2.99 sale price
Mitsuya Cider candy - $2.49 for a bag. Japanese frizzy candy.

They take credit card.

My total $15.03

Hankook Supermarket
1092 E El Camino Real, Sunnyvale, CA

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  1. How big is this place compared with Koreana Plaza in Oakland?

    21 Replies
    1. re: Robert Lauriston

      Bigger, newer and wider aisles. Great place to pick up prepared foods, banchan and marinated meats

        1. re: Robert Lauriston

          I haven't walked up and down the aisles of both stores in a little while, but I would have to think so due to the ability to keep more inventory and more shelf space to try different items. Similar to Kuk Je in Daly City. Worth a drop by next time your in the South Bay

      1. re: Robert Lauriston

        Hankook is massive compared to Koreana Plaza. They have ddukbokki in the hot deli section in the back.

        1. re: DezzerSF

          Yes, massive, better organized and CLEANER than Koreana.

          1. re: samse

            I'm pretty sure HanKook is the largest Korean grocery/plaza in Northern California in terms of size. Next up would probably be the new Super Kyo-Po in Santa Clara. Kukje would be a close third. And then Galleria in Santa Clara, Koreana(Pusan) in Oakland, etc.

            1. re: tanspace

              Rarely get to Daly City so haven't tried Kukje yet, so can't agree with you 100%, but I have to believe you. Have you checked out the new food court at Galleria "mall"? Last time I was at Paris Baguette, the food court wasn't finished yet (with the exception of the gelato concession), but looked close.

              You've got to love the Santa Clara/Cupertino/Sunnyvale/Mt View area. Three Korean markets, two Chinese and, I'm told, at least two Japanese super markets. It's really interesting making the rounds and noting the differences.

              1. re: samse

                The Galleria "mall" actually has another name - Lawrence Plaza. (Or if you're Taiwanese, I like to joke and call it LP plaza, for the big sign that spells "LP" outside). Yes, the food court there should be good once it opens, but I'm not sure when. It's been a long time since the plaze officially opened. Perhaps there's some issues with getting licenses for serving food in that place...

                There's actually 4 Korean markets (there's the original Kyo-Po also on El Camino) in that Santa Clara/Sunnyvale border alone. If you count Chinese and Cupertino and Mt. View? Let's see, that'll be 7 more that I can think of...

              2. re: tanspace

                Where is this Galleria Mall located?

                1. re: kc72

                  Sorry, I probably fractured the name. It's located in the Lawrence Plaza strip mall where the Galleria Market is located at El Camino Real/Lawrence Expressway. I stumbled into one day by using the back door of Paris Baguette.

                  Hey tanspace, is it my bad memory or was the Galleria Market once larger than it is now? I remember thinking it was HUGE the first time I shopped there many years ago.

            2. re: DezzerSF

              DezzerSF, yes I saw the ddukbokki (those tubular rice cakes, kinda looks like chow fun in a hot sauce). My co-worker says they are good. I'll have to try them one day. Are they any good here?

              The Baker Village area also sells frozen yogurt, though I didn't try any. Anyone try it?

              1. re: hhc

                Duk-buk-ki is good there. But the other 3 Korean groceries also sell it, albeit already packaged sealed and ready to eat instead of serving it hot out of the steam tray. It is the most popular snack food while I was growing up in Korea and I'm glad that they've become more common now in the last few years here.

              2. re: DezzerSF

                . . . and ya gotta love the banchan "bar" there at Hankook

                1. re: samse

                  I've tried a number of things from the banchan bar (priced by the pound generally), and the quality wasn't up to snuff. is there a particular item that you think Hankook does well?

                  1. re: Melanie Wong

                    No, but I don't expect banchan lounging all day(s?) long in a serve-yourself bar to compare with that which is served at my favorite restaurants. BUT, at least I can pick from a large selection and take it home to enjoy with and in ssambab and kimbab.

                    To sort of answer your question, I always get the dried turnip but it's never spicy enough. I must say, though, that I suspect that a lot, if not all, is "food service". I just noticed an article in the latest issue of Koream Magazine about a wholesale banchan supplier in LA. Thanks, you've just given me the motivation to go back and read it.

                    1. re: samse

                      Here's my post from last year on the panchan I've tried in Santa Clara,
                      Then, Sidedish Corner was better than most.

                      The two Korean markets in Cotati make their own, and the taste is much better.

                      1. re: Melanie Wong

                        You make me wish Cotati was on my flight path

                        1. re: samse

                          Yep, who woulda thunk, Cotati for Korean? One store owner looked insulted when I bought some the first time and asked if it came from LA or Santa Clara. Guess they need to be self-reliant up here in Sonoma County away from the big Korean communities.

                          1. re: Melanie Wong

                            I'm over-generalizing here and about a decade behind the times, but my observations have been that the smaller/remote markets made their own kimchee, cuddlefish, etc. while the larger markets would bring theirs in. Years ago, I remember walking into a small market on Monument in Concord and seeing an ajoomah squating while making a batch of kimchee in a galvanized tub on the floor. There was a small market in Oakland's Koryo Plaza where the owner would offer to make things to order (banchan, kimchee, seaweed soup, cuts of meat, etc.) if she liked or knew you. Unfortunately that market is now gone, replaced by an internet cafe

                    2. re: Melanie Wong

                      The panchan bar at First Korean Market is great. Small store but quality stuff, including the best kimchi I've found (made on the premises daily).

                      First Korean Market
                      4625 Geary Blvd, San Francisco, CA

                      1. re: Melanie Wong

                        I'm not an expert, so I'll just say what I like the best. I like the perilla leaves (labeled "pelilla" leaves) a lot. The cucumber kimchi (they have fresh usually) and have added pickled recently. I don't really like much of the cabbage or radish kimchi there. I like the pan roasted dried anchovies (the kind with red pepper paste, they also have plain). They've added some non-spicy garlicky greens recently that are also pretty good.

                        The spice level on the banchan is quite variable. It hasn't been that hot in the past, but the last two times it has had a pretty cumulative kind of hotness that sneaks up on you.